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Clan Feature: Wu-Tang Clan

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Clan Feature #6: The Wu-Tang Clan

This is the final instalment of a six article series exploring the background lore of the clans in the exciting new MMO martial arts game 9Dragons. Today we’ll explore the white clan that so many of our designers love to call home - Wu-Tang Clan.

Wu-Tang is a discipleship of Tai Chi practitioners who strive to become living instruments of divine justice. Their entire way of life, as well as their Kung Fu, is governed by the philosophy and teachings of The Tao, or The Way, which reveals secret truths governing the great universal balance. It follows naturally that the clan symbol is the harmonious Yin and Yang.

The clan is also referred to as the “Clan of Divine Sword” because their disciples hone their noble minds, hearts and bodies to become as one with their swords. Its disciples are typically proud, and above all else, noble. A disciple would lose a limb to save a fellow disciple, duel at the slightest provocation, or bloody a commoner who dared belittle the name of the clan.

Unlike Shaolin, which try to reform the evil through Buddha’s mercy and compassion, Wu-Tang believes that a balanced cosmos demands justice through retribution against evil. Therefore, the Black Clans and evildoers throughout The Land are especially wary of merciless Wu-Tang disciples. Their hand-to-hand combat system is known as Boundless Fists and their legendary sword techniques are unmatched throughout The Land.

When a person joins Wu-Tang they are renouncing their own worldly will to the higher purposes of The Tao. Remember The Tao is a philosophy, not a religion. It is a noble path to align oneself with the law of The Land from the natural balance of Yin and Yang, as illustrated through the following three rules each disciple must swear to live by …

Seek to comprehend The Tao in all things. Through meditation on the writings of the book called Tao Te Ching, your master’s teachings, and your own observations of the world, come to know The Tao and your rightful place within it.

Lay down your sword at the foot of The Imperial Emperor. Learn your lessons in Tai Chi and utilize them to master your Kung Fu and sword techniques. Then come to full realization that you yourself are the sword and pledge your allegiance to The Imperial Emperor, whom The Land itself has selected as its voice.

Take back the Art when it violates The Tao. If you encounter a martial artist who uses their art to selfish purpose that violates The Tao, you must allow your sword to disable or retire their ability to do so.

Since disciples of Wu-Tang believe that “The sword kills not the disciple” or that the pupil has surrendered himself and his steel to the judgment of The Way, they do not believe themselves responsible for the bad karma brought about by killing. Whereas a Shaolin monk must focus his energy on disarming his opponents to avoid unnecessary killing, the disciple of Wu-Tang is free to defend the weak and powerless with greater aggression and to greater effect.

Wu-Tang’s Kung Fu begins and ends with Tai Chi, the infinite contrast and harmony of Yin and Yang which creates a balanced system of offensive and defensive skills. The ultimate skill of their hand-to-hand combat system is called “Boundless Fist” and their ultimate Sword Art is called, ironically, “No-Sword.” Their training emphasizes that one learn to strike automatically, or mindlessly, according to the natural flow of universal energy or Chi, which seamlessly resides within both the disciple, and all other things.

Sound a bit like Star Wars? Well, now you know where George Lucas copped “The Force” from.

Wu-Tang’s role in The Land is one of enlightened governing force. It acts in defense of that which is righteous, and its disciples carry their honor as if it were a religious code. Whether or not the current Imperial Emperor or his Court, whom they have sworn to defend, are perceived as fair, Wu-Tang has always been revered by the commoners as a pillar of strength and as an arbiter for justice. Wu-Tang views Shaolin, the clan from which it sprang, as a brother and both Heavenly Demon and Sacred Flower clans as their mortal enemies.

Wu-Tang clan members are also perhaps the most dedicated of all disciples to their training, and the proudest clan. So it’s easy to understand why they are also the most difficult clan to join. While you can join The League of Beggars or Sacred Flower at Level Four, you’ll find yourself at Level Twenty before the master swordsman who guard Wu-Tang’s stronghold will do more than eye you with contempt.

There is a great deal more to learn about Wu-Tang Clan, as well as each of the other clans, and their dynamic inter-relations to The Land we’ve created for you in 9Dragons. Unfortunately, we don’t have space to do them all justice here in these articles. So we hope you’ve enjoyed our introductions, they’ve been a lot of fun to write, and we hope to see you in-game!

If you wish to register for beta testing or just want to find out more information on 9Dragons, then please take a look at www.9dragonsgame.com for North American players and www.9dragonsonline.com for European players.

- Ken Johnston and Steven Elliot-Altman, Acclaim
(based on The Lore created by Steven-Elliot Altman)

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